By Brad Gray
At Rosehill Gardens
First Saturday Winner For Cunningham
Just Shine gave Warwick Farm-based trainer Clare Cunningham her first Saturday the day's 2000m event at Royal Randwick.
By my count, that makes it 11 winners from Cunningham’s past 31 runners.
Making Just Shine’s win all the more special was the fact that her partner Jason Collett rode the horse and Collett’s father Richard was the one who originally bought the five-year-old over from New Zealand.
“I’ve always thought a fair bit of this horse,” said Collett, “My dad brought him out from New Zealand but unfortunately he went amiss. We were lucky enough to get hold of him.”
“He is a stayer on the rise. You look at him in the birdcage and he looks like a mile and half/two miler but he keeps stepping up.”
First Saturday winner for @ClareCRacing! 👏
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) March 3, 2018
Parr Lost For Words
It’s been a long time between drinks for affable hoop Josh Parr, who won his third Group One race aboard Shoals in the G1 Surround Stakes.
Parr, who won the 2010 Champagne Stakes on Skilled and the 2014 Spring Champion on Hampton Court, was only given the chance to partner Shoals after Blake Shinn was suspended.
“I’m rapt. I’m lost for words to be honest,” Parr gushed.
“It is never nice for someone’s misfortune to become my good fortune but gee the amount of times that happens in this industry, and probably life itself, it’s uncanny how it works. A pick up ride will often win. I am so happy.
“I knew I would land in a good spot, in a forward position, and she’s a tough, really gallant little thing. This is why we work so hard.”
The gap between big wins prompted Parr to be compared to an Olympian. Let’s just hope it isn’t another four years until he lands another Group One!
Endless Drama Tunes Up For Canterbury Stakes
Endless Drama looked in terrific order in an exhibition gallop at Royal Randwick between races with Chris Waller carefully plotting a path towards the Doncaster Mile over The Championships.
The last start Apollo Stakes winner worked home leisurely over 800m with Tye Angland in the saddle and wouldn’t have blown out a candle after pulling up. Next week’s Canterbury Stakes is likely to be his final hit out before his mile grand final.
“We want to get him to the Doncaster. It’s an awkward step because I don’t want to take on Winx in the George Ryder. I think he is better with his races spaced,” said Waller.
“In the Ajax he’ll probably get 60kg which is three weeks before, otherwise we can go to Canterbury Stakes, and there is a better rain around next week. I think he’ll be effective on a soft track."
Endless Drama working home in easy his gallop. pic.twitter.com/eg9zWRvSnX
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) March 3, 2018
Don’t Sack Santos
It’s not often a horse wins a key Golden Slipper lead up but drifts in the market with TAB Fixed Odds.
Santos was eased from $9 to $11 after scrambling home in the G2 Skyline Stakes but it’s worth noting that Pierro only won the Todman, his final Slipper run, by a very narrow margin. Think this colt has a little bit of Pierro’s bulldog about him too.
He’s likely to be the forgotten horse come three week’s time with Sunlight, Estijaab and Performer hogging the headlines.
Speaking of two-year-old’s slipper under the radar, be sure to keep an eye on Sweet Ava, the full sister to Menari.
She finished fifth in the Sweet Embrace, with Punters’ Intel revealing her last 200m (12.23) was only bettered by the winner Seabrook. That was despite Brenton Avdulla never being able to click through her hears.
“She was just a bit new between horses,” said Avdulla.
Egg Tart Not Cracked
All honours to winner Crack Me Up, but I'm not alone in suggesting that with a clear passage, Egg Tart would have won the race.
Watch the run of Egg Tart
From the 400m to the 150m Kerrin McEvoy couldn’t press the button. Chris Waller was bullish that the now four-year-old could rediscover her best form, and he was right.
Despite the interference, Egg Tart clocked the fastest final 600m of the race, according to Punters' Intel, and the equal fastest last 200m with Egg Tart and Crack me Up both recording splits of 11.77s.
It was no surprise that the gallant Care To Think covered the most ground in the race (1308.4m).
TAB were clearly impressed with the effort of Egg Tart tightening her Queen of The Turf quote from $26 into $15 and winding her Doncaster Mile price in from $26 into $21.